Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Public Service Announcement: Free Books!

Recently, I decided that even though I spend a majority of my waking hours on something to do with videogames, that wasn't enough, and vowed to spend some time reading some books that featured videogame journalism, rather than scholarship. Now, while I'm reasonably certain I know what videogames are at this point, journalism is, in my mind, a vague, fuzzy thing. If hard pressed, I'd probably mutter Norman Mailer and Hunter S. Thompson, then quickly change the subject when the person who pressed the subject stared at me in disbelief. Basically, my off-the-cuff understanding of game journalism is that it occupies a space between scholarly accounts of videogames and video game reviews. For a better (ie. accurate) account, I'll point interested parties to Keiron Gillen's The New Games Journalism. Gillen is a video game journalist turned Marvel comic book writer, and, based on the evidence of two short emails, an incredibly nice man when it comes to dealing with random questions from grad students about pieces written three years ago.

Anyway, to extract the main point here, I'm reading books that involve the New Journalism approach to videogames. Specifically, I'm currently reading Jim Rossignol's This Gaming Life. I'm not quite finished, but I will say it's at least good enough that I looked up the publisher, digital culture books. The interesting thing about them is that they offer free online versions of the books they publish. You can click on the link there for the full list, but here's a highlights reel of what I'll be checking out:
Myst and Riven: The World of the D'ni by Mark J. P. Wolf

My Life as a Night Elf Priest: An Anthropological Account of World of Warcraft by Bonnie Nardi

Play Redux: The Form of Computer Games by David Myers

And I understand there's some non-videogame related new media stuff too, if you're interested in that sort of thing.

Later Days.

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